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Written by Ashley Hutchinson

Is it a thing to start trying to emulate your ex’s ex?

I sort of developed a crush on one of my past fling’s ex girlfriends. I was his rebound, so it might not come as a surprise that I fixated on her just slightly. But it was unfortunate and just sort of unfair that she happened to be somewhat famous and successful. How could I not do a little research on her if she was in fact as prolific as she seemed?

She was. And now I’m wondering.

When I saw that she looked a certain way or had a certain aesthetic (she’s bangin’ and has an extremely well curated Instagram account), I couldn’t help but begin to mold certain areas of my life into something a little…similar.

“One day Regina George was wearing cargo pants and flip-flops, so I wore cargo pants and flip-flops,” stated a young woman from Tina Fey’s critically acclaimed modern pop classic, Mean Girls. Similarly, there were elements of this woman’s life that seemed extremely attractive to me. Despite my knowledge of humanity, and that little self-aware part of me that keeps me just the right amount of sane, I couldn’t help but feel like if I became just a little bit more…her, I might be a little happier.

I started adjusting my wants. It got to the point where I wasn’t sure if I actually wanted a cool looking vase, or if I just wanted the cool looking vase because she has a cool looking vase. How much of my opinion was actually my own anymore? Any and all similarities between the two of us began to make me think that I was obsessed with becoming her. Nobody’s perfect, certainly. Nobody is happy all the time. But to me, she would always be the girl that he couldn’t get over.

Sure. I said it.

I’m not a dumbass. I know I’m a little crazy to think that becoming this girl will somehow make me happy. I don’t even know her. But she will always be stuck in time; she will always be the girl that he loved instead. In my eyes, she still has him, and now I just have a cool looking vase and a witty tinder profile.

I’m still in a phase of extreme malleability. I wonder if the things I want are really the things I want or if they’re some remnant of a past relationship, obsession, or project. Maybe there’s nothing wrong with that. I don’t recommend becoming someone else, or trying to be something you’re not. But maybe becoming more yourself is about carrying with you the experiences you have and the friendships you make and the hearts you break. Or the heartbreaks you carry with you.

I like who I am. I don’t believe myself to be lacking. I’m just young. I’m afraid. Of the world, of taxes, of pregnancy, needles…the normal things. I’m afraid of the fact that there’s no manual. All I have are examples, of people in my life, who have somehow managed to be happy functioning human beings.

Maybe my little fixation has taught me that I’m enough, even if sometimes I don’t think it. Regardless, it was definitely not me, it was him. I did nothing wrong, and I stand by that. I’m perfect.

Bye everyone, live your truth.


The All-Encompassing Benefits of (Still) Two-Strappin’ It

The All-Encompassing Benefits of (Still) Two-Strappin’ It